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How this Swedish premium denim brand managed to create a very special boot with iconic Red Wing

Indigofera is not your average jeans brand. That’s also how they’ve built a reputation as one of the best in the world. ”We are happy to work with the best mills in Japan, and happy accepting us to challenge them to make great fabrics”, says founder Mats Andersson.

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Words: Johan Magnusson

Long-time denim collector Andersson started Indigofera after 8 years at Levi’s, where he, among many other things, was involved in the build-up of Levi’s Vintage Clothing.

— From day one, we stick to our vision to make ”prima jeans” from day one. ”Prima” is Swedish for excellent and it is still our guideline for any part of the collection. So be prima-blankets, prima-shirts. It’s our own control function of the company’s quality aspirations, he says, continuing,

— Our approach to making garments is different. We often start our process when designing our own fabric. The normal way is to go to a fabric maker and buy what they’re offering. You can quite easily go to a factory and ask them to make a pair of jeans. But you will get the cheapest way of construction. And that is why most jeans look the same because very few brands are interested in actually put that into the product. We instead go to them and ask them to make fabrics to our specification. We are also happy to have worked with the best mills in Japan, and them accepting us to challenge them to make great fabric if it would be flannels or denim.

Indigofera is now celebrating their 10th anniversary. Still a slightly small company, where especially the 5 first years were extra challenging, they’ve been growing with about 20% yearly during the last 5.

— We have seen growth in Europe for some time, and since a couple of years, we have a good development in North America with close to 20 stores across Canada, the U.S., and Mexico. We are right now in a good spot and are having a lot of fun with the brand. We have some 60 doors (retailers, Ed’s note) globally split among 20 countries.

To celebrate the first ten years, the brand has launched a bunch of collabs and special pieces:

— The second collaborative capsule collection by American author/naturalist-painter Coyote Thunder (Obi Kaufmann), built around the concept of living your life at the intersection between nature and civilization. — A special 3-piece silver jewellery collection. — The second blanket collaboration, #IV, with the internationally renowned artist Wes Lang. — Another 4 blankets collaboration with acclaimed microbrewery Omnipollo. — A leather jacket together with retail partners Standard & Strange, coming out later this fall. ”They have been a foothold for us in the U.S.”, says Andersson. — Classic products like the Fargo Shirt in a fabric made of gunpowder with embroidered Liberty cuffs and the Norris plaid shirt in their own indigo/beige selvedge flannel.

But, most of all, they release their special collab boot with Red Wing.

How did it come to life?

— After being friends with people working at Red Wing and rubbing shoulders on trade shows and, more importantly, thought that they are an amazing brand with similar values towards quality, we finally sat down and had a talk if we should make something together. That was early 2018. To get to create a boot together with them was honorable and great fun. There were two or three ideas quite early up for discussion. We brought those back to our studio and did some research. Quite early the boot that came to be, called for us. There are features that have not been seen in a long time. There is a green sole and the boot we made is inspired from 1956 Lineman and a version done in the 70s and it became the #4328 that we call ”Climber Boot”. In addition to the boot, we made a blanket, bandana and a T-shirt, all to be released tomorrow, September 21, for our 10-year-anniversary party outside of Stockholm.

Yes, give us more on the event tomorrow night.

— We’ll have buyers, store owners and denim-interested people are attending. There will be a store with all collaborations and limited special made celebration items on display. We made an 8-minute movie about Obi Kaufman, directed by Calle Stoltz, which will have its premiere screening. We have 4 bands live on stage, including Israel Nash from USA and Swedish bands and artists Gustav Ejstes (Dungen), Vacation Forever, and Titiyo.